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Bezos: A CEO Who Can Write – Monday Note
We don’t do PowerPoint (or any other slide-oriented) presentations at Amazon. Instead, we write narratively structured six-page memos. We silently read one at the beginning of each meeting in a kind of “study hall.” Not surprisingly, the quality of these memos varies widely. Some have the clarity of angels singing. They are brilliant and thoughtful and set up the meeting for high-quality discussion. Sometimes they come in at the other end of the spectrum.
writing  technical  communication  bezos  narative 
10 weeks ago by rudenoise
Bezos: A CEO Who Can Write – Monday Note
In his 2018 letter to Amazon shareholders, Jeff Bezos revealed, uncharacteristically, a key indicator of the company’s impressive achievements: Amazon Prime subscriptions have topped 100M. This was…
amazon  bezos 
11 weeks ago by synergyfactor
Bezos: A CEO Who Can Write – Monday Note
Bezos’ letters make splendid material for a Business School course on Strategy and Communication. (I’d love to teach it — if I were twenty years younger.) A caveat applies, however. Most of the strategies and practices advocated by Amazon’s founder have broad applicability, but a central mystery remains: Bezos himself, his combination of early life experience, intellect, emotional abilities and communication skills. Being Bezos isn’t teachable.
Amazon  Bezos 
11 weeks ago by SteveH
Bezos: a CEO who can write • Monday Note
Jean-Louis Gassée on the letters to shareholders that Bezos writes each year:
<p>After reading this year’s letter, I downloaded the <a href="http://phx.corporate-ir.net/phoenix.zhtml?c=97664&p=irol-govletter_pf">entire collection of twenty-one epistles</a> and devoured them. (I hope someone, somewhere has done a better job than Amazon’s site putting the compilation together in a consistent and directly accessible fashion…)

More than a few thoughts emerged from the exercise, but the one that stands out is that the customer, the ultimate arbiter of success, must be held in awe. Bezos was a bit overly dramatic about it in 1998:
<p>I constantly remind our employees to be afraid, to wake up every morning terrified. Not of our competition, but of our customers. Our customers have made our business what it is, they are the ones with whom we have a relationship, and they are the ones to whom we owe a great obligation. And we consider them to be loyal to us — right up until the second that someone else offers them a better service</p>


By 2017, he had lightened up, but without losing the sense of the customers’ importance:
<p>One thing I love about customers is that they are divinely discontent. Their expectations are never static — they go up. It’s human nature. We didn’t ascend from our hunter-gatherer days by being satisfied. People have a voracious appetite for a better way, and yesterday’s ‘wow’ quickly becomes today’s ‘ordinary’.</p>


Bezos’ letters make splendid material for a Business School course on Strategy and Communication. (I’d love to teach it — if I were twenty years younger.) A caveat applies, however. Most of the strategies and practices advocated by Amazon’s founder have broad applicability, but a central mystery remains: Bezos himself, his combination of early life experience, intellect, emotional abilities and communication skills. Being Bezos isn’t teachable.</p>


Bezos, and Amazon, remain the biggest mystery - in terms of function - of the big five tech companies.
bezos  amazon 
11 weeks ago by charlesarthur
Bezos: A CEO Who Can Write – Monday Note
In his 2018 letter to Amazon shareholders, Jeff Bezos revealed, uncharacteristically, a key indicator of the company’s impressive achievements: Amazon Prime subscriptions have topped 100M. This was…
amazon  bezos  communication 
11 weeks ago by matopher

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